Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

A window into learning: case studies of online group communication and collaboration

By Richard Jones and Louise Cooke


The two case studies presented explore the potential offered by in‐depth qualitative analysis of students’ online discussion to enhance our understanding of how students learn. Both cases are used to illustrate how the monitoring and moderation of online student group communication can open up a ‘window into learning’, providing us with new insights into complex problem‐solving and thinking processes. The cases offer examples of students’ ‘thinking aloud’ while problem‐solving, showing how and why they arrived at particular outcomes and the underlying thought processes involved. It is argued that these insights into students’ learning processes can in turn offer us the opportunity to adapt our own teaching practice in order to achieve a better pedagogical ‘fit’ with the learning needs of our students; for example, through a more precise or more timely intervention. It is also suggested that looking through this ‘window’ enables us to concentrate our assessment more closely on the process of task completion, rather than focusing solely on the end product

Topics: LB Theory and practice of education, LC1022 - 1022.25 Computer-assisted Education
Publisher: Routledge
Year: 2006
DOI identifier: 10.1080/09687760600668578
OAI identifier:

Suggested articles


  1. (1996). An analysis of children’s construction of new knowledge through their use of reasoning and arguing in classroom discussions, doi
  2. (2003). Autonomous learning zones, paper presented at
  3. (2003). Autonomous learning zones, paper presented at the European Conference for Research on Learning and Instruction,
  4. (2003). Blended learning—how to integrate online & traditional learning (London &
  5. (2004). Body of professional knowledge (London, CILIP). Available online at: http:// (accessed 1
  6. (1999). Building learning communities in cyberspace: effective use of educational technology (2nd edn)
  7. (1994). Case study research: design and methods (2nd edn)
  8. (2004). Computer-mediated collaborative learning, doi
  9. (2003). E-moderating: the key to teaching and learning online doi
  10. (1984). Experiential learning (London,
  11. (2000). Implementing computer supported co-operative learning (2nd edn)
  12. (2003). Key aspects of teaching and learning in information and computer sciences, in:
  13. (1989). Public libraries as employers: expectations,
  14. (2000). Quality Assurance Agency doi
  15. (2004). Recognising and promoting collaboration in an online asynchronous discussion, doi
  16. (2002). Rethinking university teaching: a conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies doi
  17. (2003). The good research guide for small-scale social research projects (2nd edn)
  18. (1982). The reflective practitioner; how professionals think in practice doi
  19. (1991). Thinking in education (Cambridge, doi
  20. (2003). Understanding student learning, in:
  21. (2003). Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development and problem-based learning: linking a theoretical concept with practice through action research, doi
  22. (2004). Whither library education?, doi

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.